Career in press for freedom of expression

Ranjan K Baruah
All of us have different human rights and there are universal human rights which are applicable around the globe. One of the fundamental human rights is freedom of expression in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Freedom of expression means freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
Information is always important and it means how information is passed to others. There are different media including traditional media and new media. Working in any media is always advantageous for someone to spread information and awareness through different means.  Media freedom and access to information feed into the wider development objective of empowering people.
One of the careers that comes to our mind when it comes to freedom of expression or information is press. We must remember that many terminologies are changing and the press a few decades back is not the same as what we see today. There have been tremendous changes in the traditional media and paradigm shift has taken towards new media. With ethics and integrity freedom of expression is positive else there might be negative impact.
Freedom of information and the transparency it promotes, has a direct consequence on fighting corruption, which in turn has a tangible impact on development. Former World Bank president James Wolfensohn often identified government corruption as the primary hindrance to development and an independent media sector as the number one tool to fight public corruption.
Ensuring freedom for the media around the world is a priority. Independent, free and pluralistic media are central to good governance in democracies that are young and old. Free media can ensure transparency, accountability and the rule of law; promote participation in public and political discourse, and contribute to the fight against poverty. An independent media sector draws its power from the community it serves and in return empowers that community to be a full partner in the democratic process.
May 3rd is observed as the World Press freedom Day around the world. In 2024, World Press Freedom Day is dedicated to the importance of journalism and freedom of expression in the context of the current global environmental crisis. Awareness of all aspects of the global environmental crisis and its consequences is essential to build democratic societies. Journalistic work is indispensable for this purpose. To achieve sustainable development, it is necessary for journalists to report accurately, timely, and comprehensively on environmental issues and their consequences, as well as on possible solutions.
World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in December 1993, following the recommendation of UNESCO's General Conference. Since then, 3 May, the anniversary of the Declaration of Windhoek is celebrated worldwide as World Press Freedom Day.
Journalists are of great importance as they break barriers and bring information and news for others. Rapid development in digital media has brought many challenges in the media industry but still we may plan and prepare to become journalists with print media or electronic media or even web media. There are courses related to Journalism and mass communication which are imparted by leading universities and other institutions. Apart from degrees, there are short term courses like diploma and advanced diploma, etc.
(Ranjan K Baruah is the Advisor of Skill Employment and Entrepreneurship Department of Bodoland Territorial Region, Kokrajhar and can be reached at 8473943734 or [email protected])